OLUBADAN SLAMMED ANOTHER LAWSUIT AS LAGELU DESCENDANTS SEEK INCLUSION IN OLUBADAN ASCENDANCY

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Battle for Olubadan throne has continued as Lagelu descendant, who are also known as Aboke family of Beere in Ibadan, capital of Oyo State has dragged the Oyo State Government to court over their exclusion from the Ibadan Traditional Chieftaincy lines thereby denying them the right of producing Olubadan.

Joined in the suit no. 1/348/2011 before Justice Eni Esan of the state High court are: the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, 2nd defendant, Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy, 3rd defendant, Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji, 4th defendant and the Olubadan- In-Council, 5th defendant.

While arguing the case of his clients, counsel to the claimants, Barrister Jeleel Rufai asked the court to recognise the Lagelu descendant as a distinct line alongside the existing Otun and Balogun lines where Olubadan is appointed.

Rufai asked the court to set aside the 1958 Ibadan Chieftaincy declaration which recognizes only the two lines stressing there is a need to amend the declaration to be in tandem with the current happenings.

He said that history indicated that the Aboke family who are the custodians of Oke-Ibadan (a popular festival in Ibadan) and other traditional rites in the ancient city are the genuine descendants of Lagelu, a prince and a warrior from Ile-Ife in the present Osun State who founded Eba-Odan now known as Ibadan some decades ago.

His words, “I am the counsel to the claimants in this case, Lagelu/Aboke descendants’ family. They sued Oyo State Government, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice and Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs along with the current Olubadan of Ibadanland and the Olubadan-In-Council claiming that the way the appointment of Olubadan is being made is contrary to the age-long customary practise.

“They are contending that their family ought to be the main family to be producing the Olubadan or their family ought to be included among the lines which any Olubadan will be appointed or selected

“In essence, they are challenging the 1958 Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration which recognizes only the Otun and Balogun lines as the two lines where Olubadan can be appointed”.

Rufai told the court that there is a need for the amendment of the declaration to allow his clients to be included as a major line where an Olubadan can be appointed.

Rufai added that the Lagelu/Aboke families are not happy and comfortable with the current system of ascension to the Olubadan stool that compelled families to produce a Mogaji (Head of the family) who rises from there to become Olubadan after passing through 22 or 23 stages from either Otun or Balogun lines.

He said, “They are not comfortable with it, they are not asking to be recognized as Mogaji, what they are saying is that they want to be included and recognized as a distinct line that will also produce Olubadan. Mind you, their family has a role they play, they are custodian of the Oke-Ibadan and even the original crown Lagelu brought from Ile-Ife is in their custody.

“So if we want to go by history, Lagelu/Aboke family ought to be given their due regard. So if we win this case, if we scale through, one of the likely consequences of it is that, that 1958 declaration may be amended by the executive.

“We are only asking for setting aside of that declaration, it is the duty of the executive to now put in place a panel of inquiry to come up with an amended Chieftaincy declaration which only recognizes Otun and Balogun lines”.

Justice Esan, however adjourned the case till April 6.

It should be recalled that the Governor, the state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice and Olubadan are already facing a lawsuit in front of Justice Abass of the Oyo State High Court.

The suit which was filed by some Seriki Chiefs that include Adebayo Oyediji, Olalekan Fakunle, Rashidi Abinupagun and Gabriel Kofoworola had however been adjourned till April 10.




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